Indian Navy seizes drugs worth Rs 3K cr from Pakistani boat, meant to fund terror

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New Delhi, April 19 (IANS) The Indian Navy seized a Pakistani fishing boat with contraband worth approximately Rs 3,000 crore in the Arabian Sea on Monday.
The fishing boat with contraband was coming from Pakistan’s Makran Coastal region and initial probe reveals that the contraband was meant to fund terror activities in India, Maldives and Sri Lanka.
The Indian Navy said that the boat with its crew has been escorted to the nearest port in Kochi for further investigation.
A total of five crew members, all hailing from Sri Lanka, have been apprehended and the fishing boat along with the contraband has been seized.
Indian Naval ship Suvarna, on surveillance patrol in the Arabian Sea, encountered a fishing vessel with suspicious movements.
To investigate the vessel, the ship’s team conducted a boarding and search operation, which led to the seizure of more than 300 kg of narcotics substances.
“The approximate cost of the catch in the international market is estimated to be Rs 3000 crore,” Commander Vivek Madhwal said.
The officer also said that it is a major catch not only in terms of the quantity and cost, but also from the perspective of disruption of the illegal narcotics smuggling routes.
The officer explained that the smuggling routes emanate from the Makran coast and flow towards the Indian, Maldivian and Sri Lankan destinations.
“Apart from the human costs from drug addiction, the spoils of the narcotics trade feed syndicates involved in terrorism, radicalisation and criminal activities,” the officer said.
Similarly on April 15, eight Pakistan nationals were apprehended from mid sea off Gujarat coast for drug trafficking. The law enforcement agencies had seized 30 kg heroin from them.
The Indian Coast Guard, a maritime law enforcement and search and rescue agency, spotted a Pakistani boat PFB NUH with eight Pakistani nationals near the international maritime boundary line.
They were searched and 30 kg heroin were recovered from their boat.
The coast guard official said that it was a joint operation with Gujarat Police’s anti-terrorism squad. It said that the ATS had information about the illegal consignment being smuggled into the state through the coastline.

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